Irish fight legend McGuigan in another breach of contract dispute as Taylor signs for MTK and Top Rank

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Cyclone Promotions, headed by Irish fight legend and hall of fame puncher Barry McGuigan, could be on course for another messy legal battle.

It was today confirmed that Scottish star, WBSS winner and light welterweight unified world champion Josh Taylor has signed terms with MTK Global and promotional powerhouse Top Rank.

It appears a massive coup for both the management company and the promotional outfit, as Taylor has been tipped as a potential pound for pound name.

Speaking about the move Top Rank Chairman Bob Arum said: “Josh Taylor is one of the world’s best fighters, and he is a fight fan’s fighter, a tough guy willing to fight anyone we put in front of him.

“Whether it’s Jose Ramirez in a fight for the undisputed junior welterweight title or any of the welterweights out there, he’s ready for the biggest challenges. I want to thank Josh’s advisors at MTK Global, who have the same goal as us, which is to make him an international star.”

However, Cyclone have since revealed they believe the fighter is ‘under an exclusive worldwide promotional contract’ with them.

“We are very disappointed to read the news today that Josh Taylor has signed a promotional agreement with another promotional company,” said a statement released by Cyclone Promotions shortly after the news was revealed. “Josh Taylor is under an exclusive worldwide promotional contract with Cyclone Promotions.”

“We have successfully brought Josh to the pinnacle of the sport from the day that he turned professional, including working alongside other stakeholders in boxing to deliver him the biggest fights,” the statement continued. “Most recently, Josh became IBF world champion in May 2019 and unified champion in October 2019, and we have been working since then to plan the next stage of his career.

“We are saddened that Josh has felt the need to attempt to break his contract in this manner and frustrated at those who have caused him to do so.”

Taylor has been with Cyclone since his career started and they have guided him to world title success, but it now appears he thinks it’s time to move on.

The Scott was a former stable and gym mate of both Carl Frampton and Conrad Cummings. Frampton similarly made the switch to MTK and has since signed a deal with Top Rank.

Cyclone are expected to take legal action with regard to today’s news and if they do end up in court it won’t be first for the promotional outfit.

They have been in a legal battle with Frampton since 2017 claiming breach of contract, while Frampton’s own lawsuit alleging ‘failure to pay purse money’ takes place in Belfast later this month.

Somewhat ironically McGuigan’s relationship with his manager Barney Eastwood deteriorated at the tail end of his career and the pair ended up in court. Eastwood taking a successful libel case against the former featherweight world champion.

dpg

Jonny Stapleton

Irish-boxing.com contributor for 15 years and editor for the past decade. Have been covering boxing for over 16 years and writing about sport for a living for 19 years. Former Assistant Sports editor for the Gazette News Paper Group and former Tallaght Voice Sports Editor. Have had work published in publications around the world when working as a freelance journalist. Also co-founder of Junior Sports Media and Leinster Rugby PRO of the Year winner. email: [email protected]